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  • Member since
    January 2021
  • From: Nampa, Idaho
  • 22 posts
Posted by UPSD40-2_3612 on Friday, April 23, 2021 1:19 PM

angelob6660

Union Pacific observation cars, It depends on timeline in the 1950s. The UP got rid of them in 1956/57 for easy mid train lounges without end of the line rotation.

They started a little over a year after purchasing new Astra Dome coaches for their City and Challenger passenger trains in 1954.

 

perfect! im modelling late 1955!

  • Member since
    January 2021
  • From: Nampa, Idaho
  • 22 posts
Posted by UPSD40-2_3612 on Monday, May 3, 2021 2:33 PM

Update!

i finally got my decoder installed. But when I got it on the track, the wheels were sooty.

so i tried cleaning it off with isopropyl alcohol, but it barely came off. It is front truck drive, with rear pickups, so, does anyone have a good cleaner?

(it has little flanges to pickup from the wheel to the wires. Its an old Life-Like loco)

Thanks,

UP

  • Member since
    December 2015
  • From: Shenandoah Valley
  • 8,043 posts
Posted by BigDaddy on Monday, May 3, 2021 5:40 PM

Laquer thinner, but you don't want to get that on your skin or a brass brush in a Dremel.

Henry

COB Potomac & Northern

Shenandoah Valley

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    November 2013
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Posted by snjroy on Monday, May 3, 2021 6:45 PM

I like using a toothpick for these cases, removing the soot with the wheels spining, the loco on its back. 

Simon

  • Member since
    June 2020
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Posted by Lastspikemike on Monday, May 3, 2021 9:12 PM

snjroy

I like using a toothpick for these cases, removing the soot with the wheels spining, the loco on its back. 

Simon

 

Wood works very well for this task. Hard enough to scrape but won't mark the metal.

Track cleaning fluid works well  to loosen stubborn deposits. 

Alyth Yard

Canada

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    March 2011
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Posted by NVSRR on Tuesday, May 4, 2021 9:18 PM

Nail polish remover (acetone).  Should work since it is a strong solvent

 

shane

A pessimist sees a dark tunnel

An optimist sees the light at the end of the tunnel

A realist sees a frieght train

An engineer sees three idiots standing on the tracks stairing blankly in space

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Posted by Lastspikemike on Wednesday, May 5, 2021 7:45 AM

NVSRR

Nail polish remover (acetone).  Should work since it is a strong solvent

 

shane

 

Its also very flammable so not recommended where any sparking is possible. The vapours are also quite toxic. I only use acetone outdoors or in a well ventilated area in my garage. Neoprene mechanics gloves are recommended.

Alyth Yard

Canada

  • Member since
    September 2004
  • From: Dearborn Station
  • 21,169 posts
Posted by richhotrain on Wednesday, May 5, 2021 3:54 PM

UPSD40-2_3612

Update!

i finally got my decoder installed. But when I got it on the track, the wheels were sooty.

so i tried cleaning it off with isopropyl alcohol, but it barely came off. It is front truck drive, with rear pickups, so, does anyone have a good cleaner?

I use denatured alcohol. I soak a small portion of white cotton cloth and place it on the rails and run the loco in place over that soaked small portion of white cotton cloth. Works like a charm - - every time.

Rich 

Alton Junction

  • Member since
    January 2021
  • From: Nampa, Idaho
  • 22 posts
Posted by UPSD40-2_3612 on Thursday, May 6, 2021 8:43 AM

Thank you all!

i think i might try out some lacquer thinner.

Also, when i tested my train out on the club layout, i had constant power but no motor spinning. Its not the motor wire connections, we checked those again and again. 

Anyone have any thoughts?

Thanks,

UP

any one have

  • Member since
    September 2004
  • From: Dearborn Station
  • 21,169 posts
Posted by richhotrain on Thursday, May 6, 2021 9:06 AM

UPSD40-2_3612

Also, when i tested my train out on the club layout, i had constant power but no motor spinning. Its not the motor wire connections, we checked those again and again.  

How are you testing the motor wire connections? If you are applying rail power directly to the two motor lead wires and the motor is not spinning, are the other ends of those two motor lead wires solidly connected to the motor itself? If so, there is a problem with the motor.

Rich

Alton Junction

  • Member since
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Posted by Lastspikemike on Thursday, May 6, 2021 9:08 AM

Is your decoder properly set up to run on the club system?

Did you try a decoder reset to factory default and run it as address 3 to check that? 

If it runs at home then it should run anywhere but maybe you don't have a way to run it at home. Presumably you have at least a piece of powered flex track or your decoder install might have been tricky to complete.

Alyth Yard

Canada

  • Member since
    January 2021
  • From: Nampa, Idaho
  • 22 posts
Posted by UPSD40-2_3612 on Thursday, May 6, 2021 9:46 AM

Lastspikemike

Is your decoder properly set up to run on the club system?

Did you try a decoder reset to factory default and run it as address 3 to check that? 

If it runs at home then it should run anywhere but maybe you don't have a way to run it at home. Presumably you have at least a piece of powered flex track or your decoder install might have been tricky to complete.

 

no, i do not have a powerd track at home. the decoder was never programmed, it was just hooked up. Yes, it was properly hooked up to run on the club (the club and my track plans is digitrax)

i just put it on the rails (properly) and it didi not move

  • Member since
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Posted by snjroy on Thursday, May 6, 2021 9:59 AM

Hi there. I'm going to assume it's the loco, and not the layout, since you tried it at the club. I'm also going to assume that you cleaned your wheels as suggested earlier.

What do you mean by constant power - is power reaching your motor?  Do you mean that your headlight is ON and that the loco is not moving? Make sure your wheels are clean before going further.

So you openned the shell and did not see anything obvious. I'm guessing a club member looked at things visually and did not spot anything. I would do the following:

1) Reset the decoder, then try it.

2) Disconnect the decoder and check the motor on DC power

3) Reconnect everything and program the loco on the program track, see if the decoder is responding. If the decoder is NOT responding, then you probably have a dead decoder.

What type of loco are we dealing with?  It sounds old... 

Simon

  • Member since
    January 2021
  • From: Nampa, Idaho
  • 22 posts
Posted by UPSD40-2_3612 on Thursday, May 6, 2021 11:59 AM

snjroy

Do you mean that your headlight is ON and that the loco is not moving? 

 

Bingo.

before i converted it, it dud run on dc, as i put power to the pickup wheels.

the loco is a vintage Life- Like that is front wheel drive with dummy pickups.

the decoder is responding (not that well) as i have motor, bell, light and operational. The horn is wonky, it does not immediatly but it does work. I pushed the loco down the tracks with no bumps in operation, so i think it's the motor.

again, i have not programmed it yet, so it is coded as 0003.

(although i have a suspicion as the person who installed my decoder put the connections to the motor backwards (the contacts are turned around))

Thanks, 

UP

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Posted by snjroy on Thursday, May 6, 2021 4:09 PM

Inverted contacts to the motor would only make your loco run backwards, it would not impact performance per se.

So this is a "vintage" LL... With a motor sitting on the truck?  OK, so I have never converted one of those, so maybe someone else should answer. A number of things could be happening: dirty wheels - are they brass wheels? Do you have 8 wheel pickup? A four wheel pickup (two in front, two in back) is really not ideal. Wheels need to be absolutely clean. 

The motor could in fact be dead... or be pulling too many amps for your decoder. My bet is on option A. There are ways to rejuvenate these old motors - you might find something through searches on the Web.

Honestly, I would save up my money for a better loco. Since you are in contact with club members, maybe someone can donate a good ol' Athearn Blue Box engine for you to play with. But that would still require a bit of work to convert to DCC. It's not that hard, but it's a bit of work. Better yet, maybe a club member can sell you a DCC loco for cheap.

Simon

  • Member since
    January 2021
  • From: Nampa, Idaho
  • 22 posts
Posted by UPSD40-2_3612 on Thursday, May 6, 2021 5:28 PM

the motor is on the truck, it is four wheel pickup, all in rear.

i am getting an offer for two full dcc bnsf locos that are paired up for 150$.

what i meant by inverted is a singular pin is flipped around the wrong way (which i flipped back)

Thanks, 

UP

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    November 2013
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Posted by snjroy on Thursday, May 6, 2021 7:06 PM

Sounds like you found some good locos there.

Simon

  • Member since
    January 2021
  • From: Nampa, Idaho
  • 22 posts
Posted by UPSD40-2_3612 on Sunday, May 9, 2021 11:28 PM

I just want to say, thank you to all who helped me along this journey, even though i havn't quite yet started.

Anyways, when you guys did your model railway planning, how did you plan it? did you plan it on paper, wood, foam, online, etc. Because here in idaho, wood is expensive, so i would like some advice on what to use.

My club is making a new section of the layout, and their using foam and paper, which made me ask you guys.

Thanks,

UP

  • Member since
    June 2020
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Posted by Lastspikemike on Monday, May 10, 2021 8:27 AM

Paper, lots of 1/4" graph paper.

We built one layout table top style with plywood and 2x6 because we had a bunch available. 

My second layout is foam but on pretty expensive wall mounted shelving. Unless you need that feature (ability to raise the layout out of the way, or at least part of it) a shelf layout can be economically fastened directly to the wall. Foam works well if built in small modules 2'x4' or smaller.  Woodland Scenics has a good system and their module fastening system is available as a separate product should you wish to design and build your own foam module system as I have. You have to "finish" these types of foam module because the top scenery of plaster cloth is structural. Judging by progress of layouts shown on this forum (and elsewhere) this may be an advantage or not according to your patience in waiting to run trains!

Planning on paper is cheap and effective, however, at some point you'll end up planning full sized on the benchwork. Not sure why this is so but it seems to be.

Something about the process means that even reasonably accurate drawings don't end up matching the as-built.

So plan on planning some more as the benchwork is built and the true shape of your desired layout reveals itself. Planning, drafting and building without significant changes can be and is done but it takes a lot of knowledge and skill to do it that way, knowledge and skill usually learned by building layouts 8-)

So, some sort of flexibilty in the planning to completion process is wise to allow for. Foam benchwork is relatively easy to modify during construction.  Plywood table top style is the least adaptable although cutting access holes and grafting on arced extension panels to add radius to curves is fairly easy.

What is now the classic open wooden benchwork is the most flexible and easiest to modify during construction, or any time really. Open grid can be built in table top style or shelf style or module style.  Lumber prices are now through the roof making foam more attractive BUT foam isn't structural enough by itself. Foam must sit on some sort of support system, usually wood. Mine is a steel wall-mounted shelf system. It's the supporting framework that needs to be sturdy enough to hold up the layout without the scenery  or the roadbed flexing. 

Alyth Yard

Canada

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    January 2017
  • From: Southern Florida Gulf Coast
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Posted by SeeYou190 on Monday, May 10, 2021 9:19 AM

UPSD40-2_3612
Anyways, when you guys did your model railway planning, how did you plan it? did you plan it on paper, wood, foam, online, etc.

Funny you should ask...

I built the entire layout in full size out of cardboard! I am not so good at track planning, and this 100% guaranteed that everything would fit and look good.

All doubts were removed.

Just click here to read the thread about how I did it.

-Kevin

 

Wink Happily modeling my STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD. A Class A line located in a personal fantasy world of semi-plausible nonsense on Tuesday, August 3rd, 1954.

  • Member since
    January 2021
  • From: Nampa, Idaho
  • 22 posts
Posted by UPSD40-2_3612 on Monday, May 10, 2021 12:37 PM

SeeYou190

 I built the entire layout in full size out of cardboard! I am not so good at track planning, and this 100% guaranteed that everything would fit and look good.

 

Really? Wow! i didn't even think of that.

That solves my problem!

Thanks,

UP

  • Member since
    November 2013
  • 1,622 posts
Posted by snjroy on Monday, May 10, 2021 12:49 PM

Hi there. I'm not too clear from what you mean by plan. For my layout at home, I drew a plan on paper, then I build my benchwork and did everything by eye based on the plan... I'm glad with the result, but I have a smallish shelf layout so that was not a problem.

At the club, we are planning for an entire new section, and I'll be using a CAD system due to the sheer size of the space (20X25 space). It's also a useful tool to draw up a few options for the members to pick and choose... As for transferring the plan, I plan on using paper templates transferred on wood supports. It will be open grid, no foam. If I was using foam, I would use paper templates and draw directly on the foam.

Simon 

  • Member since
    January 2021
  • From: Nampa, Idaho
  • 22 posts
Posted by UPSD40-2_3612 on Monday, May 10, 2021 12:56 PM

snjroy

Hi there. I'm not too clear from what you mean by plan. For my layout at home, I drew a plan on paper, then I build my benchwork and did everything by eye based on the plan... I'm glad with the result, but I have a smallish shelf layout so that was not a problem.

At the club, we are planning for an entire new section, and I'll be using a CAD system due to the sheer size of the space (20X25 space). It's also a useful tool to draw up a few options for the members to pick and choose... As for transferring the plan, I plan on using paper templates transferred on wood supports. It will be open grid, no foam. If I was using foam, I would use paper templates and draw directly on the foam.

Simon 

 

oh, i was just meaning planning out the layout, but thanks for the input!

My mom is an office worker, she gets quite a lot of unused printer paper, so i could use that!

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Posted by snjroy on Monday, May 10, 2021 3:18 PM

Ok, so if pen and paper is your preferred route, I strongly suggest you use graph paper, and pick a scale (e.g., 4 squares to a foot). You can then apply the planning by squares method (by John Armstrong). Basically, you choose a scale and plan your curves based on that. For example, if you choose to go for 24" radius, you will need a space of 24 by 48, or eight square feet to form a half circle. Of course, extra space is always needed for car overhang, but I think you can figure out what I mean.

Of course, there is nothing wrong with blank paper - you just need to do more measurements with a ruler.

Simon

  • Member since
    January 2021
  • From: Nampa, Idaho
  • 22 posts
Posted by UPSD40-2_3612 on Friday, May 14, 2021 9:08 PM

So, update...

My dad came home after travelling for work, and he broght a surprise... an O scale expansion pack.... What he did not understand, is i do ho.....

 We plan to build a shelf for it

UP

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